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2 Oct 23
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"'Twas a woman who drove me to drink, and I never had the courtesy to thank her for it. "

W.C. Fields


Bow Wave Issue 710--Mea Culpa Edition

news and views on trade, insurance and risk

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(c)2016 Issue No 710 21 Apr 16
Published free of charge to Readers
Editor: Sam Ignarski

In this issue:

1. Welcome
2. US Criticised for Foot Dragging over Box Weighing
3. When a Seafarer has an Accident
4. Book Review
5. In Hindsight
6. And Finally...

1. Welcome

Poem of the Week

The poet Barrie Youde writes:-

Seniority and wisdom are two different things. It happens, sometimes, that those in positions of seniority behave stupidly; and in consequence remedial action needs to be taken and replacements need to be made. When my father was an apprentice he once gave evidence to an enquiry that the Master was so drunk that he had been seen on his knees at the bridge telegraph, praying for steam. Some things never change and, unfortunately, alcohol is not the only cause of stupidity. Sometimes it is pure commercial greed.
Overstepping the Mark

“O! Captain, ‘tis a fearful night! There’s danger on the deep.” “Of course it is,” the Captain said, whilst longing for his sleep; And in his idle fantasy that all would be alright If he could simply drink away the problems of the night. Definitions.

“I do not need reminder of the strength the wind doth blow And neither do I care if to the bottom we shall go. Just carry on. Proceed to sea. It’s what is called seafaring. I’ve done it for so long that I am now beyond all caring.
I put my trust in God. I have forgotten all I learned When I was young and eager. All ambition now is spurned. Nothing really matters now. Life is but a dream.” He knelt, before the telegraph. And there he prayed for steam.
“O, Captain, I have served you well. Now you have overdone it. Although the ship is yours it is your wish that I should run it. And so I will, accordingly, with every proper thought, Including every detail in my end-of-trip report.

Although your life is sad you will not make my life the sadder. You’ve risen to command. Now you have fallen off the ladder. If you cannot see right from wrong - perhaps in thrall to Cupid – Other people are involved. Not one of them is stupid.”
And so it came to pass, with luck, the ship arrived in port. The Mate then did his duty in the knowledge that he ought. The Master was put out to grass. He didn’t sail again, Because he was a danger to his sober fellow men.

Barry Youde (19th April, 2016)

New Readers this week include:-

KH Kim, now retired but formerly with Hyopsung P&I Correspondents K Noussia of Exeter University

News of Readers

Frans van Dalen has retired after being employed in the shipping business for 48 years out of which 26 years were with Dutch P&I.

Readers Write

From Bruce Kesterton, Chief Executive Thomas Miller

(Re Bow Wave Issue 709--P&I Clubs Contemplate Merger)

I was always under the impression that journalists checked their facts before publishing?

You clearly haven’t. Your comment about your former partners is also inaccurate, as well as being somewhat insulting.
To clarify, Thomas Miller has never been anywhere near majority owned by Retirees. The Founder Shareholders’ Agreement, to which you are a signatory, saw to that most effectively. Just for the record, the Retirees’ shareholdings have tended to be somewhere between 10-20% of the whole, today hovering just over 10%.

[Note from the Editor--Mea Culpa]

Note from the Editor

Greetings. We revisit the notion of The Blob (see item 5) concluding that nothing much has changed.


2. US Criticised for Foot Dragging over Box Weighing

Our good friends over at the Handy Shipping Guide have a few unkind words to say over progress in the US on the weighing of containers under the new SOLAS rules:-

3. When a Seafarer has an Accident

John Green writes:-

While safe working is a major concern of ports and seafarers, accidents still happen. Could you imagine having an accident in a foreign country; how would you cope? For a seafarer in Felixstowe a few months ago, the support of the Apostleship of the Sea (AoS) helped him get through this and also provided reassurance to his crew mates and family that he was being looked after at this difficult time.

A Filipino seafarer was working on a ship in the port and had an accident which resulted in him falling off the ship into the water. He managed to get ashore, assisted by his crew mates. He was then taken to hospital where he received medical attention overnight. AoS Felixstowe port chaplain Sr Marian Davey visited the seafarer during his stay in hospital and after his discharge to a hotel. She spoke with his wife and daughter back home in the Philippines and kept them updated on his progress. She also liaised with the shipping company about his discharge arrangements and subsequent repatriation back home. “In preparation for his flight I provided him with a little spending money for the airport and some fresh clothing for travelling,” said Sr Marian.

She also kept in touch with the seafarer’s crew mates, who were anxious and very concerned about him. You can read the full story at:-

4. Book Review

Sea Horses--A Life Size Guide to Every Species by Sara Lourie (2016) Ivy Press, ISBN: 978-1-78240-321-0, 160pp

One of the great pleasures of writing and editing this zine is that people keep sending your editor review copies of books somehow connected to the sea which do not exactly illuminate our core areas of concern but which sort of add to the sum of what we appreciate about the world.

So it is that the Ivy Press has sent me their handy andsome book
which is everything you ever would want to know about Seahorses. There are 47 well illustrated entries showing every type of this singular creature, which swims upright, spends days in dancing courtship, the male of which carries the female's eggs in his pouch also birthing the young.

The author has been the research associate on Project Seahorse for the last 8 years and writes with flair and precision on her chosen subject. Conservation concern is high and there are good sections on the things that industry can do to help sustain these coastal creatures. The maps showing the distribution of the seahorse all over the world are very good.

Man and Chinese apothocaries are blamed for the fall in the numbers of the species.

5. In Hindsight

Sometimee later this year a collection of writing, columns and satires by your editor, drawn from the past thirty years, will appear under the title of Bumps in the Night. In this edition of the zine we thought it would be fun to feature our first ever Quarterpoints column in Lloyds List which appeared in July 1999.

Here is an extract:-

The Blob

The other day I was reading one of our domestic British papers, the Sunday Times, when I came across a report by Andrew Sullivan who was attempting to describe the world as it now is in the post-cold war era. He says that we have simply given up the idea that either the State or the private sector has all the solutions to problems. Instead of the old struggle between people of the left and right we have instead a war against what the Americans nowadays apparently call “the Blob”. The Blob is defined as any entrenched bureaucracy or interest group-public or private-that stifles excellence and prevents problems being tackled by novel means.

Those with a passing knowledge of film history may also know that there was a film called The Blob in the 1950s which featured a teen aged Steve McQueen whose warnings to his fellow citizens that a vast amorphous polyp thing was about to engulf and consume them was ignored by townsfolk until it was too late.

These speculations led me to wonder just how observers would describe the features of the Blob in our small world. What qualities can you see as you contemplate the Blob in marine insurance?

Read the column in full here:-

6. And Finally...

Definitions as per Paul Dixon

ADULT: A person who has stopped growing at both ends and is now growing in the middle.

BEAUTY PARLOR: A place where women curl up and dye.

CANNIBAL: Someone who is fed up with people.

CHICKENS: The only creatures you eat before they are born and after they are dead.

COMMITTEE: A body that keeps minutes and wastes hours.

DUST: Mud with the juice squeezed out.

EGOTIST: Someone who is usually me-deep in conversation.

GOSSIP: A person who will never tell a lie if the truth will do more damage.


INFLATION: Cutting money in half without damaging the paper.

MOSQUITO: An insect that makes you like flies better.

RAISIN: Grape with a sunburn.

SECRET: Something you tell to one person at a time.

TOOTHACHE: The pain that drives you to extraction.

TOMORROW: One of the greatest labor saving devices of today.

YAWN: An honest Opinion openly expressed.

WRINKLES: Something other people have. You have character lines.


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